In order to be able to speak about the art of our society, it is, Leo tolstoy essay on art, first of all necessary to distinguish art from counterfeit art. Tolstoy lays the blame on the artistic and spiritual fragmentation of a society divided by class, "As soon as ever the art of the upper classes separated itself from universal art, a conviction arose that art may be art and yet be incomprehensible to the masses.
Major Works In Ispoved A ConfessionTolstoy outlined the spiritual upheaval that caused him to question the basis of his existence.
The piece is considered among the great literary works of personal conversion that include St. If you make a chair out of some incredibly fragile material, it cannot do the job of supporting a typical person.
To his own thinking, art was not expression merely but also communication. He left the army in and traveled through Europe before returning to Yasnaya Polyana, where he lived for the rest of his life. It is essential to know exactly how much of this range Tolstoy meant to include for the purposes of his aesthetic theory.
For example, the essay contains at least three antinomial categories of major importance.
It is all artistic activity. At this point in his career, Tolstoy was concerned with producing two types of fiction: Despite the potential for confusion, it is clear that the theory of art offered in What Is Art?
The assumption that art is a form of communication is not unique to Tolstoy. Speech, transmitting the thoughts and experiences of men, serves as a means of union among them, and art acts in a similar manner. Such are the three conditions which divide art from its counterfeits, and which also decide the quality of every work of art apart from its subject matter.
Beginning aroundTolstoy was plagued by depression and an obsession with death that lasted until his final spiritual crisis-a "conversion" to the orthodoxy of his youth-in Bad art is unintelligible and incomprehensible. Thus did the Hebrew prophets and the ancient Christians regard art; thus it was, and still is, understood by the Mohammedans, and thus it still is understood by religious folk among our own peasantry.
During his visit, Tolstoy witnessed a public execution in Paris, a traumatic experience that would mark the rest of his life.
Tolstoy believes that art is good if it is judged to be good by the majority of people. It is always complied with in peasant art, and this explains why such art always acts so powerfully; but it is a condition almost entirely absent from our upper-class art, which is continually produced by artists actuated by personal aims of covetousness or vanity.
Viewing it in this way we cannot fail to observe that art is one of the means of intercourse between man and man. But not less wrong are the people of civilized European society of our class and day in favoring any art if it but serves beauty, i.
In he entered Kazan University, but failed to earn a degree. The aim of art is not merely to produce beauty, or to provide pleasure, enjoyment, or entertainment.
The peculiarity of this latter means of intercourse, distinguishing it from intercourse by speech, consists in this, that whereas by speech a person transmits his thoughts to another, by art he transmits his feelings. First, artists have an experience or feeling, such as fear, joy, grief, anger, hope.
Translations from the Russian are those of Aylmer Maude and are readily available in several editions. Transmission of anything else makes counterfeit art.
MacMillan Publishing Company,p. A procession may be art in that it expresses the feelings of solemnity and grandeur and impresses these feelings on those who behold it. Theories usually involve selecting popular works and constructing principles from these examples.
They then desire to share this feeling with others, to infect them with it, to make them fearful, joyous, grief-stricken, angry, or hopeful. Volkelt, for instance, remarks that art cannot be judged on its moral content because then Romeo and Juliet would not be good art.
In one the individuality of the feeling transmitted may predominate; in another, clearness of expression; in a third, sincerity; while a fourth may have sincerity and individuality but be deficient in clearness; a fifth, individuality and clearness but less sincerity; and so forth, in all possible degrees and combinations.
The entire section is words. A man suffers, expressing his sufferings by groans and spasms, and this suffering transmits itself to other people; a man expresses his feeling of admiration, devotion, fear, respect, or love to certain objects, persons, or phenomena, and others are infected by the same feelings of admiration, devotion, fear, respect, or love to the same objects, persons, and phenomena.
Beauty cannot be defined objectively, and therefore cannot be used as a criterion to define what is, or is not, art.That’s what Leo Tolstoy says in his essay WHAT IS ART? He dismisses everyone from Dante, Michelangelo, Shakespeare, Beethoven, Baudelaire, Wagner to even some of his own writings as counterfeit.
For Tolstoy art is twofold, an expression of divine devotion and brotherly love/5. Art and Sincerity Excerpted from What Is Art?
Leo Tolstoy mi-centre.com In order correctly to define art, it is necessary, first of all, to cease to consider it as a means to pleasure and to consider it as one of the conditions of human life.
Viewing it in this way we cannot fail to observe that art is one of the means of. Leo Tolstoy, like the Greek philosopher Plato, believed art too important to be judged in terms of art alone. Because art is capable of making. Essays and criticism on Leo Tolstoy - Tolstoy, Leo. Leo Tolstoy Tolstoy, Leo - Essay.
Homework Help The art of Tolstoy is of such irresistible simplicity and truth, is at once so intense. The Aesthetic Theory of Leo Tolstoy’s.
What Is Art? SINCE ITS FIRST APPEARANCE near the turn of the century, Tolstoy’s What Is Art? has stimulated dispute. Prominent among the faults noted by commentators have been the unremitting moralism of the essay in its approach to art, the tone of bitter polemic which characterizes many of its.
He also wrote plays and numerous philosophical essays. In the s Tolstoy experienced a profound moral crisis, Later novelists continued to appreciate Tolstoy's art, but sometimes also expressed criticism. Two Shining Souls: Jane Addams, Leo Tolstoy, and the Quest for Global Peace (Lanham: Lexington, ).